Dental photography: Behind the scenes

Have you ever seen dental photography and said “What an amazing picture!”, then asked yourself how that picture was taken but could not find the answer?

You assumed it was taken with the best camera in the world, using the most powerful and precise lens, a professional illumination studio, a very professional one indeed, and that the black background must be a fabric made with 300 Egyptian threads taken from some pharaon’s grave in the VI century…You think: “Not anyone can take those pictures!”. But what if I tell you that dental photography is easier than you think and that now you can take a high impact photography with low impact in your wallet…?

 

Fig.1

Currently dental photography is less complicated than what it seems and cheaper than what you might think

Fig.2

1st Act: Ayala’s F. Box*
*All credits to my mentor  Carlos Ayala Paz (Perú) for developing this lighting technique. 
styleitaliano style italiano camera lens dental photography equipment

Fig.3

This is the equipment I use to make the following photos
styleitaliano style italiano dental photography equipment

Fig.4

Place the speed lights inside the box, direction to the lateral walls to achieve a soft light over the object to be photographed. Speed lites in slave mode activated, because of the integrated flash output of the camera.
styleitaliano style italiano dental photography implant

Fig.5

Ayala’s F. Box*
styleitaliano style italiano dental photography tools

Fig.6

Ayala’s F. Box*
styleitaliano style italiano dental photography cast black background

Fig.7

Ayala’s F. Box*

Fig.8

2nd act: THE ENCOUNTERED LIGHTS
styleitaliano style italiano dental photography equipment

Fig.9

This is the equipment I use to take the following photos
styleitaliano style italiano instructions dental photography equipment

Fig.10

2 lights with a diffuser that is located in a central spot of the object to be photographed.
Play with the lights to achieve different effects in your photographs.
styleitaliano style italiano dental photography backlight

Fig.11

THE ENCOUNTERED LIGHTS
styleitaliano style italiano dental photography dramatic light

Fig.12

THE ENCOUNTERED LIGHTS
styleitaliano style italiano dental photography backlight

Fig.13

THE ENCOUNTERED LIGHTS: White background
styleitaliano style italiano dental photography black background

Fig.14

THE ENCOUNTERED LIGHTS: Black background
styleitaliano style italiano flash dental photography equipment glove diffusers

Fig.15

3rd act: THE GLOWING GLOVE
styleitaliano style italiano camera lens dental photography equipment

Fig.16

This is the equipment I use to make the following photos
styleitaliano style italiano flash dental photography equipment glove backlight

Fig.17

The glove acts like a light diffuser. Using only one light we can obtain different textures.
styleitaliano style italiano dental photography backlight

Fig.18

THE GLOWING GLOVE: Textures
styleitaliano style italiano dental photography equipment

Fig.19

None of these photos have been edited (except for the watermark)
styleitaliano style italiano dental photography incisor spatula

Fig.20

Camera: Canon T6 | Lens Tokina 100 mm | Settings 1/125 f22 iso 200 Flash: THE ENCOUNTERED LIGHTS
styleitaliano style italiano dental photography bur

Fig.21

Camera: Canon 7D | Lens Tokina 100 mm | Settings 1/250 f32 iso 200 Flash: THE ENCOUNTERED LIGHTS
styleitaliano style italiano dental photography teeth

Fig.22

Camera: Canon 7D | Lens Tokina 100 mm | Settings 1/125 f22 iso 200 Flash: THE ENCOUNTERED LIGHTS
styleitaliano style italiano dental photography

Fig.23

Camera: Canon 7D | Lens Yongnuo 35mm inverted| Settings 1/125 f22 iso 200 Flash: THE ENCOUNTERED LIGHTS one light
styleitaliano style italiano dental photography backlight model

Fig.24

Camera: Canon T6 | Lens Tokina 100 mm | Settings 1/125 f22 iso 200 Flash: THE ENCOUNTERED LIGHTS
styleitaliano style italiano dental photography dark background

Fig.25

Camera: Canon 7D | Lens Tokina 100 mm | Settings 1/125 f22 iso 200 Flash: THE ENCOUNTERED LIGHTS at one ligth
styleitaliano style italiano dental photography dental pulp

Fig.26

Camera: Canon 7D | Lens Yongnuo 35mm inverte d| Settings 1/125 f22 iso 200 Flash: THE ENCOUNTERED LIGHTS
styleitaliano style italiano dental photography incisors texture

Fig.27

iPhone 6 and MDP device with Diffusers
styleitaliano style italiano dental photography soft tissues

Fig.28

iPhone 6 and MDP device with Polarising filter
styleitaliano style italiano dental photography bone graft

Fig.29

iPhone 7 and MDP device with Diffusers
styleitaliano style italiano dental photography equipment set

Fig.30

And now that you know the script and secrets behind the curtain, are you going to stay sited to watch the play or will you dare direct it?

Conclusions

When making dental photography it’s not necessary to have the best camera in the world neither the most sophisticated lens, you just need some tricks and tips, creativity and good manipulation of light!
The key in photography is understanding the light so you can manipulate it: it doesn’t really matter if it’s with a reflex camera or with the phone you take selfies with. Go and try it, document your cases and learn from them.